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Seashore and Beach Plants

Podocarpus polystachyus   Kayu keramat Podocarpaceae

 

Kayu keramat, Podocarpus polystachyus

 

Podocarpus polystachyus

Kayu keramat, Podocarpus polystachyus

The single conifer, Podocarpus polystachyus (Phylum Pinophyta), found locally in mangroves is strictly speaking, a coastal species, more often found in beaches or rocky shores. Conifers are plants which produce seed but have no flowers, instead developing their reproductive structures on cones or strobili (singular, strobilus).
Various parts of Southeast Asia to New Guinea. Trees 1-20 m tall; bark reddish brown, narrowly fissured; leaf blades long and narrow in young plants, narrow and long or oval (6-13 by 3-10 cm) in older plants; male plants produce clusters of cream-coloured cones which shed whitish, powdery pollen; female plants produce a highly modified cone consisting of a fleshy receptacle and ovule (seed precursor); after fertilisation, the ovule becomes the seed and the receptacle enlarges and becomes shiny red. Sandy beaches, rocky coasts and mangroves.
The timber is commercially exploited (podo wood), the tree planted as an ornamental on roadsides or parks or can be grown as bonsai.

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